Sunday, March 16, 2008

USCCB Gets It Wrong...
Again

As most of us already know, the Catholic News Service is the official news organ/propaganda wing for the USCCB. A mega-diocesan newspaper, if you will. And again, as most of us know, diocesan newspapers reflect what the boss-man feels... period.

Well, fellow Bloglodytes, I just read an interesting article from the CNS. The distortions, the purposeful mis-leading, the outright lies. Shameful. But I've come to expect that sort of thing from the CNS.

Here's some of the more interesting tid-bits; (Emphasis mine) Chaldean bishop says U.S. accountable for death of Iraqi archbishop (No, he never said that. See further below)By Joe Kohn Catholic News ServiceDETROIT (CNS) -- A Chaldean Catholic bishop said the United States must be held accountable for the death of Chaldean Archbishop Paulos Faraj Rahho of Mosul, Iraq. Bishop Ibrahim N. Ibrahim of the Eparchy of St. Thomas the Apostle, based in Southfield, Mich., said that particularly the administration of U.S. President George W. Bush is responsible for the terrorism and killing of Christians in Iraq. (A repeat of the same lie as the headline. Just keep saying the lie over and over again. Eventually, people will believe it to be the truth.)He said the administration is ignoring the problem. "No one is defending us," he said March 13, the day the archbishop's body was recovered after kidnappers said where they had buried him. "They are killing Christians because they are Christians." (And who is the "they"? And "they" are killing Christians... why, again? But somehow, that's America's fault? And I still haven't read where Bishop Ibrahim is directly quoted as saying that America or the American President are "accountable and responsible" for the deaths of Archbishop Rahho or any other Christians.)Bishop Ibrahim said the Feb. 29 kidnapping and subsequent death of the archbishop threw into question the destiny of Christians in Iraq. Three of the archbishop's companions were killed in the kidnapping. "We know that before the invasion of the Americans in Iraq, (terrorism) was no such a thing," (I'll dissect that in a moment.) Bishop Ibrahim said. "Christians and Muslims were living together, exactly like brothers and sisters, and that's it. But since the invasion, everything changes." (I honestly do believe that the Bishop Ibrahim is frustrated and angry. I can't blame him... I'd be too. But his we all lived together "exactly like brothers and sisters" quote is clearly wrong. Here's why - in 1900, Christians comprised just over 20 percent of [Iraq's] population. In 2000 that figure was just below 2 percent. 1 in every 5 Iraqis was a Christian really not all that long ago. Now it's 1 in 50. I'm sure the reasons why the drop in percentages are many and complex, but I'd wager that moslem animosity, hatred and a forcing out of many a Christian family/clan wasn't exactly conducive to "living together exactly as brothers and sisters". Common sense dictates that when you go from 1 out of 5 to 1 out of 50, something's going terribly wrong. And I'll further destroy the "exactly like brothers and sisters" myth later in this posting.) "Somebody has to be responsible," the bishop said. "Since the Americans are occupying Iraq, they have the responsibility of the security of every Iraqi, and in the first place minorities. I am not saying the Christians only -- but they are doing nothing for them." (Unlike what the inflammatory headline says, what Bishop Ibrahim specifically stated was that America is responsible for the security of Iraq... NOT the death of Archbishop Rahho. Did anyone else notice that? And the statement that "they are doing nothing for them" is simply factually incorrect. American troops have laid down their lives defending all Iraqis who are desirous of a life free from terrorism. And again allow me to point out that it isn't the Americans setting off car-bombs in market places and churches and killing thousands upon thousands.And you know what? Not everything under Saddam Hussein was exactly peaches and cream. Here's some of a report from June 2000 (when good ol' Saddam was running things) concerning the state of affairs of Christians living in Iraq. And you'll never guess what this source of information is from. I'll post it at the end. If you get a chance, read the report. But here's some of it; (Emphasis mine) ...it has become very politically correct to blame the emigration from Iraq [on] the sanctions [imposed on Iraq by the international community after the Persian Gulf War]. But millions were leaving before this became PC... I think economic hardship plays a very small role in this mass movement, but it cannot be discounted. It [the emigration], however, is largely a result of the callous disregard held by the current Baghdad administration for its own citizenry (Journalist 17 May 2000).

The same country expert states that Assyrian and Chaldean Christians endure "similar discrimination" in areas of Iraq controlled by Baghdad, though the level of discrimination is "somewhat less" for Chaldeans (Journalist 17 May 2000).
He attributes this in part to the Chaldean Patriarch Raphael II Bedawid's proximity to Saddam Hussein's "inner circle" and to Bedawid's role as a "Baghdad-controlled puppet at international religious councils and in Rome" (Journalist 17 May 2000).

He further states that "Ba'ath Party ideologists look down on all non-Muslims; ...Christians, Yezidis, etc. as second-class if they refuse to change their nationality and are not Muslim" (Journalist 17 May 2000).

Another expert states that Chaldeans, as opposed to Assyrians, are "generally speaking...treated well by the [Baghdad] regime" (Professor of Middle East History 7 Apr. 2000).

A third expert states:
Chaldeans are generally speaking treated as well as any other group or individuals, Christian, Muslim, whatever, who show loyalty to the regime and Saddam and stay away from "troublemakers"-- that is coup plotters, questionable Kurds, Shia, and Arabs suspected of harboring anti-regime or anti-Saddam sentiments. Deputy Prime Minister Tariq Aziz is a Chaldean Christian who joined the Ba'ath Party in the very early days and is fiercely loyal to Saddam (INSS Senior Fellow 20 Apr. 2000).

The UK Immigration & Nationality Directorate reports that despite Tariq Aziz's lofty position in the Baghdad regime, Christians have little political influence in the Ba'ath government (Sept. 1999).

The World Directory of Minorities states that unlike Assyrian Christians, Chaldeans have "tended to assimilate into Arab identity" (Minority Rights Groups International 1997, 347).
Besides Tariq Aziz, there are Chaldeans in "high command within the Ba'ath and the army, while others serve in the presidential palace" (Minority Rights Group International 1997, 347). The Directory further states that the Baghdad regime, in an effort to bolster its support among Christians, "consciously exploits the Chaldean sense of vulnerability" (Minority Rights Group International 1997, 347).

One news report states that Christians, who comprise only about 5 percent of Iraq's overwhelmingly Muslim population of 22 million, "feel alienated" within Iraqi society (Associated Press 26 Dec. 1998).

According to the US Department of State, the Iraqi government in Baghdad has long "sought to undermine the identity of minority Christian (Assyrian and Chaldean)...groups" (25 Feb. 2000).

The State Department also reports that "non-Arabs are denied equal access to employment, education, and physical security, [and they] are not permitted to sell their homes except to Arabs, nor to register or inherit property" (25 Feb. 2000).

The US Department of State cites the UN "Special Rapporteur and others" as stating that, "the [Baghdad] Government has engaged in various abuses against the country's 350,000 Assyrian and Chaldean Christians, especially in terms of forced movement from northern areas...and repression of political rights" (USDOS 25 Feb. 2000).
You know where this info is from? It's specifically a report from the U.S. Department of Citizenship and Immigration Services... but it's posted on the website for The Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees. Not exactly a bunch of mouthpieces for right-wing America, huh?

6 Comments:

Blogger Former Altar Boy said...

Vir,
As always, you are to be commended for always backing up your posts with the actual sources of your material (which, BTW, readers should know you have done from Day One) not to mention your ability to pick thru the BS and see behind the propaganda headlines and dig for the real story.

10:24 AM  
Blogger Subvet said...

Gerald Augustinus at The Cafeteria Is Closed once referred to the USCCB as the Democratic Party at prayer. I think he may have been onto something there.

10:51 AM  
Blogger Vir Speluncae Catholicus said...

FAB,
Thanks buddy!!

_______________________

SubVet,
That sounds like a modern-day take on the old saying from MANY a year ago --- The Episcopalians are the Republican Party at prayer.

3:22 PM  
Blogger Vir Speluncae Orthodoxae said...

What a difference 40 years can make.

I understand the good Bishop being ticked, and other other hand Cavey always backs it up with facts and actual sources.

7:27 PM  
Blogger David said...

This shits me, no end.

Like when Christain Palestinians are quoted saying how terrible the persecution is under the "Occupation", failing to mention that it's the Mohammedan Arabs who are persecuting them, not the "eeeeevil Joooooz", and that things have got worse since things were handed over to that old sodomite Arafat...

9:35 PM  
Blogger Joe of St. Thérèse said...

I understand the Bishop's anger. And in one respect it's justified...Of course the situation of Iraqi Christians is a bit more complicated. But I do generally agree.

The soluion isn't exactly to pull troops out of Iraq

3:56 PM  

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